|| n. Having life, vigour or spirit.
SAW Alive is an obvious follow up to
2009's successful SAW - The Ride; a year round, live action horror maze
offering varying levels of scares on the old Thorpe Belle.
Note: from the 2012 season, SAW Alive will only open during Fright Nights (in October). Please check with the Park for more details.
||Live Action Horror Maze
|On Ride Photo
Pre-2010 - the old Thorpe Belle:
Today - SAW Alive:
SAW Alive opened in 2010 due in no small part to the runaway success of SAW - The Ride the previous year. It is a year-round live action horror maze housed on the old Thorpe Belle steamboat. Much like the annual Fright Nights mazes, guests have to form a conga line of between 6 and 10 people and walk through the attraction together. Actors and special effects lurk inside, bringing to life some recreated scenes from the films and hoping to scare the living daylights out of you.
So how does the maze fare? Firstly, credit must be given to the effort that has gone into the attraction in terms of theming. The outside of the boat looks fantastic (and very in-keeping with the theme of the roller coaster), and the rooms inside are very detailed and authentic. Six areas feature in the walkthrough, with one trap from each of the first 6 SAW films depicted in each area. The attention to detail is admirable; the toilet scene smells like a toilet, the blood splats all over the attraction look realistic, and the freezer room really is quite cold. The make up on the actors is also highly believable. Thought has gone into some innovative ways of scaring guests; visitors are subjected to a shaking floor at one point, and have to walk through an "electric corridor" (which is not actually electrified, due to H&S rules...). Even the pre-show is nicely done; a militant SWAT team worker abandons guests whilst they watch a recorded video message from Billy alone.
Where this attraction falls down is that it bills itself as a "horror maze", but aside from the visually grotesque scenes contained within, it's really not particularly horrifying. Comparisons must inevitably be drawn with Thorpe's Fright Nights mazes, and against these, SAW Alive undoubtedly has the best theming, but unfortunately offers fewer scares. A few actors jump out at you and follow you around, but the maze just doesn't offer the same level of chaos as say, The Asylum does, or the same level of pure anxiety as say, Experiment 10, does. Considering that the Fright Nights mazes are temporary, and that SAW Alive is a permanent attraction, this is disappointing. It was also quite a short experience, taking only about 2 or 3 minutes to get through the whole attraction. By no means a bad addition to the Park, SAW Alive could be vastly improved with more of a focus on out-and-out scares, rather than relying on the (admittedly excellent) scenery alone.
- As with SAW - The Ride, SAW Alive is very well themed.
- Capitalises on the popularity of the yearly Fright Nights mazes.
- Some uncomfortable/grotesque scenes!
- Not as jumpy, intimidating or intense as other Fright Nights mazes.
- A short experience.
- The "on-ride" photo taken of each group at the start of the attraction comes across as money-grabbing.
"Went in this yesterday with my 10yr old son. He voiced my own opinion when we came out - LAME - and this was the first horror maze type thing either of us have ever been in. To a generation brought up on Dr Who and Primeval a few actors jumping out at you and touching your neck isn't likely to thrill."
Nick, Milton Keynes, UK.
"Having seen all the SAW films I thought nothing in there would scare me! WRONG!! I clung on and buried my head in the back of the girl in front of me! I was physically shaking with fear and cried! The actors do an amazing job of jumping out and scaring you, so I can't comment on the scenery 'coz I didn't open my eyes! 10/10 but you wouldn't get me in there again..."
Katie, Southend, UK.
"Considering my friends told my most of what would happen inside, I thought it would be lame, predictable etc. No. I actually thought I was dying/dead/dreaming because it was so freaking scary. Messes with your mind!"
Taylor, London, UK.
Show/Hide more reviews.
"I am an Annual Pass holder so I managed to be one of the first to endure the maze, all I can say is... TERRIFYING! It really is scary, jumpy, and makes me scream like a little girl! Well done Thorpe Park."
Robert, Surrey, UK.
"I actually didn't know quite what to expect from this attraction, but as soon as we stepped in, I wanted to get out! The actors inside are scary, the freezer room was the scariest and I screamed out loud!"
Ben, Liverpool, UK.
"The second I walked in, I expected to see the SAW traps killing people - which I did - but I didn't expect people jumping out at you and grabbing you. It may only last for five minutes but it is worth going in."
Reece Callow, Essex, UK.
"Even though I am only 10, it did not scare me! It was fairly frightening in some rooms, but not too bad. So it's a pretty good maze"
Jaye, Hertfordshire, UK.
"SAW Alive isn't very good. It really doesn't live up to the title of "world's most horrifying live action maze."
Max Powell, Essex, UK.
"SAW Alive is soooo scary, you get well scared. At first I thought it was boring but then you see the pigs and stuff... it's so horrible urghh!!"
"Very short, got it over and done with quickly, but ABSOLUTELY TERRIFYING! The themeing is awesome, but pigmen leaping out at you is enough to make you scream like a four year-old! The carousel wasn't very good however - the shotguns were in the wrong place. But still - TERRIFYING! "
Tommy Murray, Bracknell, UK.
"I thought I wouldn't be scared because I know they are just actors but I was screaming the whole way round and the rooms are exactly like the films."
Katie, London, UK.
"I'm only 12 but to me, personally, it was not scary. It made me jump a few times but there was nothing in there that would make me scream 'like a four year-old'."
Dylan, Preston, UK.
"This was a really good attraction; it did scare me quite a bit. The toilet scene smelt disgusting, and the freezer scene was terrifying because it was actually quite cold. A good ride, but not as good as Terror of the Towers at Alton Towers which was amazing!"
Lowri Spear, Stafford, UK.
"The maze was quite frightening! I'm 12 years old, and they made the traps look so real! The actors could jump out and grab you which I wasn't expecting. 8/10."
Nathan Arcement, Chertsey, UK.